Acknowledge what you’ve accomplished, digest what you’ve learnt and consciously strategise your career by journalling your business analysis work experience.
As a business analyst, business change is part and parcel of everything that you do — every study, every project, every engagement.
Dubbed an ‘agent of change’, you investigate situations, consider perspectives, analyse needs, evaluate options, define requirements and manage changes.
And you’re considered an expert in this field, one who seeks opportunity and delivers value.
But how well are you managing your own change? Are you paying the same meticulous attention to your career? How often do you review your personal position at the end of an assignment?
Don’t just be an expert for organisational projects, be an expert for your career progression.
A great place to begin is by keeping a journal of your business analysis experiences.
Journalling is a fundamental professional development habit. Because by cataloguing projects, remembering challenges, capturing successes and recording value you create a solid base from which to launch a well considered personal development strategy.
Here are 7 worthwhile reasons for journalling your business analysis work experience:
- Position yourself for an upcoming project
- Prepare for performance reviews
- Identify professional development goals
- Motivate for a promotion or increase
- Capture evidence for professional certification
- Refresh your resume and online profiles
- Demonstrate your experience and expertise
Keeping a journal shouldn’t be complicated or cumbersome — and you want to keep this habit up — so don’t let it become overwhelming.
It could be as simple as maintaining a log to track your duties on the projects and their results, so that before you move onto your next project you think about what you could change next time and retain for future reference.
But better still, thread the work experience with your personal story.
Here are 10 questions worth pondering answers to:
- What was the project, its goal and objectives?
- When did you start, finish and how many hours did you spend?
- What was your role, responsibilities and deliverables?
- Which stakeholders and relationships stood out?
- Did you apply any methods, models, techniques or tools?
- What went particularly well on the project?
- What would you do differently next time?
- Can you quantify the value you added?
- How do you feel overall about the assignment?
- Which career action do you need to carry forward?
When capturing your story find a straightforward way that works for you — be it pen on paper, tables in excel or stored online.
And in today’s digitally connected world it’s well worth thinking about using LinkedIn as more than a networking platform. Use its power as a portfolio tool to showcase your work experience. And you could further crystalise your expertise by authoring a white paper, producing an industry case study, writing a blog post or recording a podcast.
It’s easy to slide from one project to the next without giving much time for afterthought, but make time — even if you only spend 30 minutes after each assignment — to acknowledge what you’ve accomplished, digest what you’ve learned and strategise your career.